By Nicole Heubusch
It’s that time of year again for blueberry season. It starts in April and lasts through the end of May. Individuals who love blueberries and are looking for a new family activity for this spring can consider picking blueberries locally. Blueberries are ranked number one in antioxidants, so not only do they taste great, they also help fight cancer, aging and heart disease. Blueberries can be eaten fresh, or can be frozen to enjoy all year round without loosing antioxidants or flavor. The best way to freeze blueberries is to lay them on a baking sheet and leave them in the freezer for about 8 hours so they don’t clump together. Once they are frozen, put them away in a closed container until ready to eat. Don’t wash the berries before freezing; it leaves condensation on them while frozen. The weather this season has slowed down the ripening process so please call each farm before making a trip.
Stafford Blueberries in Brandon is located at 3111 John Moore Rd.
They are open Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sundays from 2 p.m.-5 p.m. They opened Saturday, April 19. Visit www.staffordblueberries.com, or call 340-4382 for more information.
Stafford Blueberries has 2 acres of land and offer five varieties of blueberries. They take cash only, and sell blueberries for $6 per pound, (a pound is two cups). They are family friendly and have picnic tables where families can relax. They also sell fresh, local honey, blueberry jam and blueberry plants.
Proctor’s Family Farm is located in Plant City at 7105 Kinard Rd.
It will be open May 2, 3 and 4 from 9 a.m. until evening. Get more information at its Website, www. proctorfamilyfarm.com or e-mail blue berries@ proctorfamilyfarm.com.
Moody Blues Farm is located at 404 Cloverleaf Dr. in Lithia.
They are open Saturday, April 26 and Sunday, April 27, and for more dates visit www.moody bluesfarm.com, its Facebook page at Moodybluesfarm or call 684-8468.
Moody Blues Farm has 2.5 acres. Their pricing is based on current market value and the blueberries are sold by the pound. They also offer pre-picked fruit for sale. Moody Blues Farm is a Certified Organic Blueberry Farm.
DK Blueberries in Seffner is located at 1615 U.S. Highway 92 E.
They will be opening for the 2014 U-Pick season in the beginning of the month of May. Its hours are Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 9 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sundays from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. DK Blueberries U-Pick is $6 per pound and its We-Pick and Pack is $8 per pound. They take cash only, and individuals with a military ID pay $5 per pound (U-Pick only). On Wednesdays for U-Pick it is also $5 per pound for seniors 65 and over. For more information, call 802-0406 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bonnie Blueberries is located at 201 Wendel Ave. in Lithia.
It has four different varieties of blueberries for U-Pick and will open in mid-April. Visit its Website www.bonnieblue berries.com, or call 928-4736 for more information.
Barventa Farms is located in Riverview at 6633 Simmons Loop.
It will open in mid-April to mid-May. Learn more at its Website, www.barventafarms.net or e-mail bfarms@barventa farms.net
Lyna Berry Farms is located at 17928 Bill Taylor Rd.
It will be opening in early May. Visit its Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/lynaberryfarms for more information.
For more U-Pick blueberry sites in the area, visit www.pickyourown .org/FLwest.htm.
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